US scientists are developing stents, typically used in heart surgeries, which will help prevent blood clotting and inflammation in blood vessels by releasing red wine antioxidants.
Currently used commercial stents, which are a kind of small mesh tube built to support blood vessels, are prone to releasing chemotherapy agents harmful to the body. Here is more on it.
Stents are used in a procedure called coronary angioplasty, in which a surgeon inserts the device inside a blocked artery to widen it.
It allows blood to flow to reach the heart and soothes the patient of heart pain or prevents a potential heart attack.
However, the stents currently in use can turn toxic and cause the blood vessel around the heart to again narrow down.
"By delivering red wine antioxidants during conventional angioplasty, it may be possible to prevent excess tissue from building up and the blood vessel from narrowing again as it heals," researcher Tammy Dugas from the Louisiana State University, US said.
The researchers are also in the process of developing a balloon coated with the same compounds as the stent in order to treat similar blood flow blockages throughout the body, and not just the heart.
These drug-coated balloons can help treat arteries that are not accessible through traditional angioplasty and are otherwise difficult to target with stents.
Heart diseases usually are a result of plaque that builds up inside the walls of the artery and blocks the blood flow from reaching to the heart. When the heart is not supplied with sufficient blood to pump, an increased risk of heart attack develops.
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